Menu Join now Search

Pony Express: How to Get a Polished Ponytail

Don't just pull your hair into a ponytail—give it some polish in a few easy steps.

The Look: Sexy and Sideswept

The Look: Sexy and Sideswept

1 / 13

VIEW ALL

The side ponytail is back—but with a modern twist.

Make Waves
If your hair is straight: Mist volumizing spray over damp hair and set with hot rollers. Or use a texturizing spray to coax out curls.
If your hair is curly: Prep with a cream or serum and blow-dry straight. Add waves with a curling iron.

Go Sideways
Gather your hair to one side just below the nape of your neck. "You want the hair around your face to have a full, rounded shape," says stylist Oscar Blandi.

Loosen Up
Add romantic wisps around your face by freeing a few strands with a pick-style comb.

Photo: Shutterstock 

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

2 / 13

VIEW ALL

Goody Versa Comb, $3

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

3 / 13

VIEW ALL

Hot Tools Professional Hairsetter with 20 flocked rollers, $50

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

4 / 13

VIEW ALL

Garnier Fructis Style Wonder Waves Wave Enhancing Spray, $4

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

Sexy and Sideswept: The Tool Kit

5 / 13

VIEW ALL

Tresemme 24 Hour Body Root Boosting Spray, $4

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

The Look: Smooth and Chic

The Look: Smooth and Chic

6 / 13

VIEW ALL

Get Sleek and Shiny
If your hair is straight: Prep dry hair with a thermal-protecting spray and smooth with a flatiron. Finish with a light mist of shine spray.
If your hair is curly: Layer a shine serum over a heat-styling spray to shield your curls from heat damage. Then blow-dry your hair straight and use a flatiron to add extra polish.

Part Smart
You don't want your hair to look plastered to your head, so make a deep part on the opposite side of your natural part. "This will give your hair built-in lift," says stylist Mark Garrison.

Fight Frizzies
A natural-bristle brush keeps your hair smooth as you pull it into a low ponytail. Touch up flyaways along the hairline with a fine-tooth comb coated with hairspray.

Photo: Shutterstock

Smooth and Chic: The Tool Kit

Smooth and Chic: The Tool Kit

7 / 13

VIEW ALL

Infiniti by Conair 1-inch Solid Ceramic Straightener, $38.99

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

Smooth and Chic: The Tool Kit

Smooth and Chic: The Tool Kit

8 / 13

VIEW ALL

Oscar Blandi Mini Jasmine Oil Hair Serum, $35

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

Smooth and Chic: The Tool Kit

Smooth and Chic: The Tool Kit

9 / 13

VIEW ALL

Brush Strokes Wooden Boar-Bristle Brush, $6.49

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

So Long, Scrunchie

So Long, Scrunchie

10 / 13

VIEW ALL

Use these decorative elastics to dress up your ponytail.

Here: France Luxe Cone Ponytail Holder in Ivory Tokyo, $16

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

So Long, Scrunchie

So Long, Scrunchie

11 / 13

VIEW ALL

Scunci Crystal Ponytailer, $6

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

So Long, Scrunchie

So Long, Scrunchie

12 / 13

VIEW ALL

Bellissima Ponytail Holder, $6

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

So Long, Scrunchie

So Long, Scrunchie

13 / 13

VIEW ALL

Jane Tran Animal Print Ponytail, $7.50 for three

Originally published in Ladies' Home Journal, July 2009.

Buy it now

Photo: TED MORRISON

More You'll Love

A Beautiful, Boho Braid Hair Tutorial For Any Summer Event
11 Chic Makeup Bags To Store All Your Prized Beauty Products
This French Fishtail Braided Side Bun Is The Only Hair Tutorial You Need For Summer
Add Edge To Any Look With This Easy Pull-Through And Infinity Braid Updo
This Flower Braid Updo Is Perfect For A Summer Wedding
The Best Fragrances For Women Who Are So Ready For Spring
A Double Topknot Hair Tutorial That Looks Chic, Not Childish
15 Gorgeous Hairstyles For Thin Hair
3 'Beauty And The Beast' Hairstyles For Your Next Glam Event
Close